Nearest Town: Challis
Site Size: 2 linear miles
Directions: From Challis, US 93 N ~2 mi; at mp 248.7, turn R (E) (this rd veers N and is marked on US 93 with Pennal Gulch “Sportsman’s Access” signs); go ~0.5 mi; R (E) at second right (not the private drive) onto main county access road; go 0.7 mi; L (N) onto Public Access Rd (signed “Day Use Only”) 0.9 mi to Salmon River. Please respect private property postings along the access rd.
Description: This trail navigates through Salmon River floodplain wetlands, agricultural meadows, and cottonwood forests. Bird species include both rare seasonal migrants and common summer residents. In the wet ranch meadows, look for Sandhill Crane, Long-billed Curlew, and raptors, including Prairie Falcon, Merlin, and Northern Harrier. Cattail patches are good areas to find Sora, Virginia Rail, Marsh Wren, and Yellow-headed and Red-winged Blackbirds. Scan utility lines and fence wires for perched Tree, Bank, Cliff, and Barn Swallows. At the left turn onto the Public Access Road, check the fields toward the Salmon River for Wild Turkey. About 0.3 mile north of this turn, scan the backwater ponds on either side of the road for Cinnamon Teal and Wood Duck. Another 0.2 mile north, search the aspen and cottonwood trees for Red-naped Sapsucker, Veery, Yellow Warbler, and Northern Waterthrush. Along the Salmon River, check the banks for American Dipper, Spotted Sandpiper, and Belted Kingfisher and search the cliffs on the opposite bank for White-throated Swift and Peregrine Falcon.
IDFG (208) 756-2271
Challis Chamber of Commerce (208) 879-2771